What's does "CC" mean?
Location visited: Cleveland, OH
Subject: Phoenix Coffee
Subject: Phoenix Coffee
[East 9th Location]
Free WiFi ? : yes
Rating: 4+ [see key]
Driving on a massive road trip, you tend to make stops where you know people. I mean, why waste a perfectly good geographical anomaly when someone you actually enjoy spending time with is a stone's throw away?
Well, I can vouch that my one colleague knows how to capitalize on such opportunity. While driving through Cleveland, I mentioned the idea of a needed coffee stop and he countered with the prospect of his father making a stop into said coffeehouse to meet us for coffee. Not one to complain of such a heart string tug, we agreed upon a place called Phoenix Coffee for the rendezvous.
Now Phoenix Coffee was no blindfolded pick; of Cleveland's coffee scene, it seems that Phoenix was a well-respected place to grab decent coffee. The East 9th location we arrived at moments later after a little mapping; a nondescript brown brick building situated in the city proper of Cleveland, the coffee shop had little to separate it except some signage and a row of windows on one wall. Upon initial sighting of the interior, it struck me as a place that had been around for awhile as the decor was red and vintage, but not so much in the hip way (turns out they've been around since the early 90s).
With the father not arrived yet, I proceeded to order myself a cup of their self-roasted (Phoenix roasts their own coffee) Ethiopian Yirgacheffe and a double espresso. The Ethiopian was a bright coffee with a bit of a saucy flavor and a dark body; it seems that it was a little stale but beyond that, it didn't hold a whole lot of distinct flavors (maybe a bad infusion). The espresso fared little better, with a blond shot pulled short that held an initial bitterness, some sweet cocoa and vanilla with a bit of peach making a brief showing. The shots proved to have a little too much bite and while I can't say it was horrible, I would say it could stand to improve. The tea is free leaf.
After I had finished my drinks, I went outside to move the car as we had managed to earn a parking ticket (they are quick in Cleveland) and meanwhile, the father-of-the-colleague arrived. They talked and bonded and upon my arrival, I had missed the whole experience all together (*tear).
As for Phoenix Coffee, it was a decent coffeehouse that I feel may have been a poor experience that day based on micro factors (barista skill, time of day, etc) but nonetheless, tis no excuse. Hopefully my next visit will prove better.
If you're in Cleveland and in need of decent coffee, try out Phoenix.